You have to swallow the whole fish, Zen Master Taizan Maezumi told his students, and then spit out the bones. First absorb the tradition, endure the hardships of Zen training, then you can spend the rest of your life separating the real treasure from the baggage it came in, learning what you can let go of and what is truly yours. Spitting Out the Bones is American Zen Master Genpo Merzels story of his exhilarating and humbling journey, including the last five years rising from the ashes of his very public fall from grace, and a candid exploration of the challenge of bringing the essence of the great tradition he inherited to life in the West.
Dennis Genpo Merzel trained under Zen Master Taizan Maezumi becoming a Zen teacher in 1980. He is one of a small group of Westerners recognized in both the Soto and Rinzai Zen traditions. In 1999, Genpo Roshi combined western psychology and Zen to create Big Mind, a self-discovery process that's been experienced by thousands of people across North America and Europe. His work is rooted in a deep appreciation of traditional Zen, which he has practiced and taught for over four decades, and his ongoing exploration of ways to integrate the wisdom and insights of both East and West into everyday life.